The Relentless Moon by Mary Robinette Kowal

The Relentless Moon by Mary Robinette Kowal
A Lady Astronaut Novel, Book 3
Publisher: Tor Books
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Historical, Mystery/Suspense/Thriller
Rating: 3 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

The Earth is coming to the boiling point as the climate disaster of the Meteor strike becomes more and more clear, but the political situation is already overheated. Riots and sabotage plague the space program. The IAC’s goal of getting as many people as possible off Earth before it becomes uninhabitable is being threatened.

Elma York is on her way to Mars, but the Moon colony is still being established. Her friend and fellow Lady Astronaut Nicole Wargin is thrilled to be one of those pioneer settlers, using her considerable flight and political skills to keep the program on track. But she is less happy that her husband, the Governor of Kansas, is considering a run for President.

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I’ve not read a lot of sci-fi/fantasy books, but I do love a good story about space. When I saw this version of the space race where everyone worked together and women were at the head of the program, I had to know more. This is book three in a series and it probably would’ve helped to get the first two read before reading this one. The format is still readable, but it would’ve made more sense to know what was going on. Still, I had to read it.

I have to say I wasn’t a fan of the heroine, Nicole. She’s a hard nut to crack. First, she’s extremely smart, which is good for a heroine. I liked that she could hold her own with her male counterparts. She’s tough and forthright, which was refreshing. But…she’s neurotic. I mean, she’s got anorexia, which is relatable, but it also made me wonder about her in space. If she’s not wanting to eat because of the disorder while she’s on Earth, wouldn’t it be dangerous for her to not eat while in space? Wouldn’t it make doing her job harder? Seemed like it might. And she’s convinced everyone is out to get her. Maybe they are, but maybe they aren’t.

There is also a nasty habit of using a lot of anachronisms for things and getting into heavy technical descriptions in this book. If I were reading a non-fiction book, then this wouldn’t have been as much of a problem. But being it’s a piece of fiction, it took away from my enjoyment of the story. I got bogged down trying to remember what each set of letters stood for and sometimes got lost in the descriptions. I want a book to pull me into their world. Sometimes, this didn’t feel like the case.

This is also a long book. It’s over five hundred pages. There is a bit of slogging to get through it. Now, to be fair, if I’d read the other books in the series, this might have made this book a bit less cumbersome. I might have known the characters better and felt more like they were people. So I suggest reading the first two first.

Still, this is an interesting telling of the space race with women in charge. The Earth is losing it’s battle, the USA is losing pieces and the human race needs to find somewhere else to live. It’s quite fascinating. If you’re looking for a book that’s going to take a while to read, but will be worth it, especially if you’re a space fan, then this might be the book for you.

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